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10/01/2017 - Patsy McGonagle named as Special Guest at 41st Sports Star Awards


Patsy McGonagle named as Special Guest at 41st Sports Star Awards

Pictured at the launch of the 41st Donegal Sports Star Awards on Monday night in the Mount Errigal Hotel is Davitt Walsh, Neil Martin, Patsy McGonagle and Seamus Neely.


It was to a packed house at the Mount Errigal Hotel on Monday evening that the 41st Donegal Sports Star Awards was launched by local hero Davitt Walsh.  The room was filled with past recipients of these prestigious awards and it was an opportunity for former recipients to reminisce with fellow sporting greats. 


Local sporting great Patsy McGonagle was named as the special guest at the 41st Donegal Sports Star Awards on Friday 27th January in the Mount Errigal Hotel. The Finn Valley A.C. supremo who managed the Irish Athletic team at four Olympic Games was named as the special guest during Monday evening's launch.


Patsy McGonagle named as Special Guest at 41st Sports Star Awards

Pictured at the launch of the 41st Donegal Sports Star Awards on Monday night in the Mount Errigal Hotel is Seamus Neely, Chief Executive, Cllr. Barry O’Neill, Leas Cathaoirleach, Neil Martin, Chair of Donegal Sports Star Awards Committtee and Davitt Walsh with past award recipients including Veronica McAteer (Camogie 1976), Fr. Michael Sweeney (Appreciation 1984), Ed Moore (Hockey, 1976), Bryan Harkin (Squash 1985), Donal Reid (GAA 1986, 1993), Anne McGrath (Tennis 1980), Sean Boyle (Master of Cermonies 1978), James Cullen (Motorsport 1981, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1993, 1999), Christine Russell (Triathlon 2014), Nicola Harris (Secondary School Sports Teacher 2012), Anne Marie Meehan (Primary School Teacher 2012), Colm McGonagle (Soccer 1979), Danny McDaid (Athletics 1976, 1977, 1979 (Overall), Hall of Fame 2011), Jack McLaughlin (Boxing Hall of Fame 2005), Charlie McAteer (Appreciation 1998), Michael McGarvey (Rugby 2001), David Patterson (Badminton 1977), Paul Giles (Cycling 1990 to 1993), Eamonn Giles (Appreciation 1997 & 2002), Stephen Friel (Boxing 1992), Richard Eaton (Hockey 1985), Danny Ryan (Boxing 1990 to 1994)


Tickets for the awards function go on sale from the Mount Errigal Hotel today, Tuesday.


Donegal County Council is the exclusive sponsors of the awards and Neil Martin, Chairman of the Donegal Sports Star Awards committee said “the Council has been associated with the Donegal Sports Star Awards since 1977 and their support has helped the committee to make the event the huge success it has been over many years”.


He added “on behalf of the committee I would like to extend a warm welcome to a number of past Donegal Sports Star Award winners who are here with us this evening for the launch. And as a token of our appreciation of their attendance we are delighted to be making a special presentation to each of them”.


Neil Martin also welcomed Davitt Walsh who launched the Awards as well as the Ryan family Danny, Keane, Jordan and Alannah who finished a magnificent third in the Ireland’s Fittest Family contest before Christmas. Danny is a past award winner.


In his address Leas Cathaoirleach Cllr. Barry O’Neill congratulated the committee on the awards and said that as sports commentator and as a Donegal man he is always listening out for results from Donegal no matter what the sport is.   However, he said that it is not just about the winning, it is about the taking part and winning a medal at the end is just an added bonus.


Also speaking at the launch Chief Executive Seamus Neely said that looking through the list of this year’s nominees gave him a great sense of the of the level of activity, the level of endeavour and indeed a great sense of the personal achievements that each and every one of these sports people have experienced.


He added “their names have not just appeared on this list by accident.  They are here because of years of hard work and commitment invested by them, by their families, by their schools and by their clubs and coaches.  To get on this list is a wonderful achievement in itself and I am sure that it is an honour for these sports people to be recognised by their own home county in this way.”


This year an extra category has been added by dividing the Primary Schools in two sections. There will now be winners for schools of under 100 pupils and over 100 pupils and it is hoped that this will enhance the competition in this sector.  


The only person who knows at this stage that he will be a Donegal Sports Star Award winner on Friday 27th of January is Conrad Logan. Conrad will receive the Professional Sport Achievement Award after playing a leading role as goalkeeper on the Hibernian team that won the Scottish Cup Final last May. 


The Ramelton native follows in the illustrious footsteps of Packie Bonner in picking up a Scottish Cup medal. Since then Conrad has moved onto English League 1 side Rochdale who are currently challenging for promotion. Conrad’s father Joe a former Swilly Rovers, Finn Harps and Sligo Rovers player attended the launch as did Joe English who represented his son Mark who has won the Overall Donegal Sports Star Awards in the last two years.


Tickets for the function go on sale on Tuesday 10 January and the Mount Errigal Hotel is the sole booking outlet. Those hoping to attend the function are being urged to get their tickets as soon as possible.



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